Monday, 23 April 2018 13:39

Leaders report advancements in transformative year for gender equality

Members of the Victorian-based Male Champions of Change National group (established in 2015) have achieved gender balance, or progress towards balance, in 83 per cent of organisational leadership categories assessed by the group, up from 63 per cent in 2016.

The result features in the group’s Progress Report 2017, which details organisational and collective action to advance gender equality.

The 23-member group has also: 

  • committed to address gender pay gaps in their organisations
  • developed and shared practical actions leaders can take to identify and eradicate everyday sexism in the workplace
  • commenced critical work to tackle organisational contributors to women’s low retirement savings. This includes reducing the financial impact of caring and encouraging more sharing of responsibilities, for example, by enabling and supporting partners to take parental leave. 

Australian Sex Discrimination Commissioner and group Convenor Kate Jenkins said this is a transformative period for gender-related issues, where the cultures and behaviours that drive gender inequality are now at the forefront of community and business conversation. 

"This current environment has put the spotlight on the importance of leadership and the 2015 Male Champions of Change recognise the critical role they play within their organisations and the public sphere. 

"Looking ahead, the group is focused on issues such as advancing women’s economic security and sexual harassment prevention and response strategies," Commissioner Jenkins said. 

Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commissioner Kristen Hilton – who convenes the Fire and Emergency Male Champions of Change group – said, "Male Champions of Change are, quite rightly, changing business as usual to mean improved flexibility for men and women, the end of everyday sexism and better responses to family violence. 

"It is heartening to see these and other important workplace gender issues given the attention – and action – they so critically need."

The Male Champions of Change National group includes members from public, private and not-for-profit organisations. Its reach extends across 130,000 employees, customers and communities throughout Victoria, Australia and internationally.

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